MEGHAN Markle and Kate Middleton are said to have drifted “further apart than ever”, after Meghan flew to Canada and seemingly ignored Kate’s 38th birthday celebrations at Kensington Palace.

The palace confirmed the Duchess of Sussex is back in Canada, after the shock announcement that Meghan and Prince Harry are stepping back from senior royal duties. 

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex revealed that they will now be splitting their time between the UK and North America, and will work to become financially independent of the royal family. 

This came the day before Kate Middleton’s birthday, and it is thought Meghan skipped celebrations to fly back Canada instead. 

The Duchess of Cambridge was spotted looking strained yesterday, as she arrived at Kensington Palace before having family over to celebrate. 

Royal author Phil Dampier told Fabulous Digital: “Meghan’s friendship and relationship with Kate now seems fragile and she obviously made no attempt to go to Kensington Palace to wish her well on her 38th birthday, preferring to return to Canada.”

Wishing The Duchess of Cambridge a very Happy Birthday! 📸 Press Association

A post shared byThe Royal Family (@theroyalfamily) on

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex hinted they were feeling the pressure when they did an ITV documentary with Tom Bradby on their tour to southern Africa earlier last year. 

Phil added: “There have been reports Prince William tried to patch things up with Prince Harry and Meghan and meet him after the Africa tour because he was worried about his and Meghan’s mental state.

“But it seems the meeting didn’t happen.

Meghan’s friendship and relationship with Kate now seems fragile and she obviously made no attempt to go to Kensington Palace to wish her well on her 38th birthday, preferring to return to Canada.

“Clearly if Meghan said ‘no-one asked me how I am’ that includes Kate as well, but did Meghan ask Kate how she was when she was pregnant?

“We don’t know the full truth but for now it sadly seems the sisters-in-law are as far apart as ever, as are the royal brothers.”

Harry and Meghan: An African Journey, which aired in October, showed former actress fighting back tears as she revealed royal life has been a struggle. 

A source told Fabulous Digital that Prince William had planned a family get-together at Kensington Palace last night, and her kids gave her homemade cards and gifts.

Kate's dad Michael Middleton was spotted arriving at Kensington Palace last night for the bash.

The Queen and Prince Philip, who are in Sandringham, wished Kate a "very happy birthday" on Instagram, and Prince Charles and Camilla also passed on their well wishes.

While it's thought Meghan skipped Kate's birthday celebrations, the SussexRoyal account did leave a comment on Kensington Palace's birthday post for the duchess, which said: "Wishing a very happy birthday to The Duchess of Cambridge today!"

Meghan and Harry were also absent for Kate's birthday weekend at Sandringham last Sunday, where Kate was spotted with pals like Lady Louise Mead and Rose Hanbury outside church.

Although the palace has denied rumours of a rift between the two duchesses, a source claimed that Meghan had made Kate cry during Princess Charlotte's bridesmaids fitting in 2018.

Further tension was hinted at following reports Kate told Meghan not to berate members of her team at Kensington Palace.

The Duke, 35, and Duchess, 38, said in their surprise statement on Wednesday: “After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution.

"We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen.”

The  BBC reported no other members of the Royal Family were told before the bombshell announcement – with the Queen said to be "disappointed".

The couple had reportedly told close friends they want to spend some of the next two months working out of Canada after a six-week trial holiday over Christmas and New Year was deemed highly successful.

We shared how Prince Harry is ‘doing what he’s told’ by Meghan Markle, royal photographer claims.

The Sun has learned Harry and Meghan wish to keep Frogmore Cottage on the Windsor Estate and want their security bill paid for.

The final straw for Harry and Meghan was the official release of a new royal portrait featuring The Queen, Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince George.

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